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About Us

Mission

The Waterberg Wild Dog Initiative works alongside the community to enhance understanding and promote the conservation of African Wild Dogs within the Waterberg.

Vision

Conserving the Waterberg Wild Dogs.

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The Waterberg Wild Dog Initiative (WWDI) is a community-driven, non-profit organization aiming to conserve the free-roaming African Wild Dog population in the Waterberg, Limpopo. The WWDI works alongside the community to provide education and raise awareness about the population, monitor and collect data on the population, implement projects to mitigate threats to their conservation, and promote the ecotourism potential of African wild dogs in the Waterberg.

By engaging the community with the conservation efforts, the WWDI hopes to create a sustainably safe environment for the Waterberg Wild Dogs.

The WWDI has made huge strides in conserving the Waterberg Wild Dogs since its inception in August 2020. The WWDI has placed tracking collars on two free-roaming packs, providing valuable information about the packs and giving an extra layer of protection to the dogs by being able to monitor their movements. Information from these collars is relayed to community members in the area, providing an early-warning system for landowners as the pack moves through private lands. This system allows landowners to take proactive steps to mitigate conflict, including kraaling livestock or checking fences. It also provides community members with a chance to see the pack while they pass through private farms.

During denning seasons, the WWDI assists with coordinating ecotourism projects that generate funds from visitors paying to see the wild dog pack and distributed the funds back to the landowners impacted by the pack denning on their property and the surrounding properties. The model leverages the opportunity to observe free-roaming wild dogs while they are relatively stationary during the denning season and uses the funds generated to mitigate the impact of the wild dogs on the properties around the chosen den site. These periods also provided an opportunity to increase awareness and appreciation for the Waterberg Wild Dogs and to learn new information about them that can be shared with the local community and interested researchers.

Over three years, the WWDI has taken over 600 guests to see the TOOG Area Pack and raised R162,000 to support the private properties conserving the dogs during this time.


In September 2022, the WWDI partnered with the Limpopo Department of Economic Development, Environment, and Tourism (LEDET) to facilitate a donation of 75 impalas back to the three private properties that hosted the TOOG Area pack during their recent denning seasons. This exciting project aimed to offset increased stock losses on the private farms that resulted in the pack remaining stationary in the area for an extended period of time while they raised their pups. As a way of saying thank-you to the private landowners and acknowledging the responsibility placed on private properties to conserve the free-roaming African wild dogs, LEDET agreed to donate the 75 impalas from one of the provincial reserves in the province.

The WWDI's efforts are helping get the information needed by the community to better understand the Waterberg Wild Dog population and using this information to support the community conserving the packs. By prioritising the conservation of the Waterberg Wild Dogs, we're prioritising the efforts of a community who is invested in the dogs.

These efforts and successes show that a community-driven initiative and a co-existence framework can support the conservation of free-ranging African wild dogs in the Waterberg.

Harnessing the community's drive to help the Waterberg Wild Dogs thrive.

Waterberg Development Initiative

The WWDI was the first conservation project to operate underneath the Waterberg Development Initiative NPC (formerly Waterberg Tourism NPC), a registered non-profit company (Reg. 2018/539160/08) and public benefit organization (PBO#930064611) seeking to promote and connect Waterberg conservation, community, and the local economy. In September 2022, the WWDI became registered as its own non-profit company and is now the Waterberg Wild Dog Initiative NPC. The WWDI wishes to thank the Waterberg Development Initiative team for believing in our mission from the start and enabling us to grow.

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